This is the preliminary (or launch) version of the 2024-2025 VCU Bulletin. Courses that expose students to cutting-edge content and transformative learning may be added and notification of additional program approvals may be received prior to finalization. General education program content is also subject to change. The final edition and full PDF version will include these updates and will be available in August prior to the beginning of the fall semester.

The Bachelor of Arts in Cinema is focused on narrative movie production. Consequently, the program is designed to advance conceptual understanding of visual storytelling and to teach and practice the technical methodologies foundational to movie-making.

Cinema majors collaborate on student productions under the supervision of faculty with professional production experience. Each summer session, students and faculty work collectively on a series of films funded by the School of the Arts.

Course work explores the proper use of motion picture cameras, lights, sound recording equipment and editorial software. Students also learn the history and theory of film, and develop skills in screenwriting, producing, directing and the business of movie-making.

The B.A. in Cinema requires a minimum of 120 credits, including 48 in the major. At least 45 of the 120 credits must be taken as 300- and 400-level courses. Students are admitted directly into the cinema program and are not required to complete the Art Foundation Program.

Many full-time students enrolled in the cinema program graduate with their B.A. degree after the successful completion of the summer session following their third year.

Student learning outcomes

Upon completing this program, students will be able to:

  1. Demonstrate safe, effective and responsible technical practices used in operating motion-picture cameras, grip/lighting, sound and editing equipment employed in all stages of production
  2. Write, revise and critique original screenplays that include fundamental narrative elements appropriate to creative guidelines
  3. Express a rich understanding of the history and influences of cinema by communicating adeptly about references with professionals in the film universe
  4. Produce narrative films by competently, collaboratively and professionally participating with a team in their assigned production role.